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Pfizer profits fall

20th January 2006

Pfizer has reported a fall in profits but predictions that the fall would be greater were held off by cost cutting.

Revenue for the last quarter of 2005 was nine per cent lower than a year ago, falling to $13.6 billion, while profits fell three per cent to $2.7 billion.

For the year profits fell seven per cent to $15 billion and sales fell two per cent to $51.3 billion.

The company claimed that the better than expected results were due to cost cutting, which saved around $800 million last year, double previous predictions.

Hank McKinnell, Pfizer chairman and chief executive, said: “While we are pleased that Pfizer’s performance in 2005 exceeded previous expectations, investors should be aware that the factors driving Pfizer’s performance may differ materially in 2006.

“We enter the new year with renewed determination to capitalise on all the opportunities we see to bring our innovative medicines to those who need them.”

The company was hit by the loss of patents and the painkiller Bextra, which had sales in 2004 of $1.3 billion, had to be withdrawn over possible heart attack and stroke risks.

Demand for Celbrex also fell in the last quarter by 53 per cent, along with the antidepressant Zoloft and Viagra.

Mr McKinnell added that there was some good news on the horizon for next year.

He said: “We completed the year with positive news on many fronts – including double-digit full-year worldwide growth of Lipitor; an exceptional Lyrica launch in the US; priority-review status for two potential breakthrough medicines, Sutent for cancer and Champix for smoking cessation; favourable decisions in Lipitor patent cases; and a 26 per cent dividend increase for the first quarter of 2006.

“Our strategy of driving growth in our in-line medicines and investing in promising new medicines is the essence of the new Pfizer. We will continue to focus on enhancing value for our shareholders and meeting patients’ needs worldwide.”

track© Adfero Ltd

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